Healthy Weight Loss 101
In spite of the health problems that being overweight causes, it is still amazingly difficult for the average person to maintain the discipline and willpower they need in order to lose weight.
Most people who try to lose weight fail repeatedly. The psychology of weight loss can be very complicated.
Here are a few of the psychological factors which make weight loss difficult.
1 – Losing weight requires changing many ingrained habits.
You usually end up overweight as a result of your habits. Habits that have developed over a long period of time are very difficult to change. They can be changed but doing so requires a great deal of planning and consistent effort. One slip can easily cause a person to revert to old long established habits.
2- Eating is a social activity.
No matter how highly motivated you are to lose weight, most of the people in your social sphere will not be trying to. In fact, some of the people in your social group will probably activity try to discourage your dieting! It makes them feel uncomfortable to see you succeeding at losing weight and it is easier to discourage you than to change themselves.
3- You may be eating for comfort.
Many people lose their appetite when under a great deal of stress. Unfortunately, that group does not include most of the people who end up overweight. In fact, many overweight people eat more and eat worse foods when they are under stress.
4- You measure yourself against other people.
Some people get discouraged when they have been trying to lose weight for a while but see people around them who seem to maintain the right weight easily, without trying. If you have a tendency to become overweight, you will always have to try a little harder than some other people to keep the weight off. The trick is to compare yourself to your past self and not to those other people.
5- Weight loss is not constant.
Weight loss is a process that can take a long time and can happen at different rates at different times. No matter how hard you work or how consistently, your weight loss will plateau at times and you will become discouraged. In spite of the fact that this is common and expected, and almost always resolves itself in time, many people become discouraged and stop dieting.
6- You are embarrassed to exercise in front of others.
This is a factor for many people. They go to the gym and find too many bodybuilder types and they are embarrassed to be exercising around them. First, realize that you don’t have to exercise at the same gym, or any gym at all for that matter. You also don’t have to exercise at the same time they do. In addition, one of the great benefits of starting and exercise program is that you can get results from something as simple as walking and doing some calisthenics. You don’t have to compete with those people in the gym.
There are many psychological factors which present problems when trying to lose weight. Understanding them can be the first step in preventing them from shutting down your weight loss.